Lighting up cell surface glycans with MRI: Glycans were imaged in live mice using MRI, following metabolic labeling with an azido-labeled sugar and subsequent administration of a strained cyclooctyne TMDIBO linked to a gadolinium contrast agent. Azido-sugar-dependent contrast was observed in various tissues including tumor, kidney, spleen, gut and liver, 2 hours after contrast agent administration. Since cell surface glycosylation is often aberrant in cancer and other diseases, this approach may enable non-invasive imaging of disease progression.
Department of Chemistry
University of Cambridge